Mumbai: As much as 90% of people who come across outdoor digital screens, part of the so-called out-of-home (OOH) media, recall the advertisements being played on them, according to the findings of a survey.

Ishan Raina, CEO, Out Of Home Media

The survey, conducted exclusively for Out Of Home Media (India) Pvt. Ltd, surveyed 14,574 people across 175 locations in Mumbai, New Delhi, Chennai, Bangalore, Pune and Hyderabad where the Mumbai-based company has its screens installed.

Out Of Home Media is among the several companies that use flat-panel television screens in high-traffic areas such as malls, airports, railway stations and traffic junctions to play advertisements.

The study also found that the average weekly reach of the company’s network in Mumbai, New Delhi, Bangalore and Pune totalled 5.46 million people, with more than 70% of them recalling the OOH screen.

About 70% of those who come across such screens were in the 20-34 age group.

The survey, carried out by Nielsen Co., was to measure the audience size, ad reach and brand recall from the OOH medium, the lack of which now makes the efficiency of ad expenditure through this advertising medium difficult to gauge.

The lack of metrics is hampering the growth of OOH, says Ishan Raina, chief executive officer of Out Of Home Media, who claims the market for the segment will reach Rs150 crore by year-end.

Partha Rakshit, managing director, South Asia, Nielsen, says OOH helps advertisers to focus on the upmarket segment. “You can go to upmarket areas for flexi-casting. Most of all, for a marketer of upmarket products, this is going to be the media of the future."

Ad industry executives also say the lack of metrics is a concern for them.

Most of the ad buys on digital OOH are based on a combination of gut feel and the number of footfalls registered in malls, multiplexes, cafés, etc., that the individual OOH players provide, said Sudarshan Rajan, business director of Mumbai-based media specialist MediaCom India Pvt. Ltd.

Out Of Home Media’s rivals, however, say the findings of the survey cannot be recognized as industry metrics since it was not a combined effort.

“Outdoor (media) has a national body of its own formed recently and one of the points in the charter is to get outdoor research going. This will take shape in due time," said Soumitra Bhattacharyya, chief executive of Laqshya Media Pvt. Ltd’s Laqshya Outdoors.

Gaurang Shah, founder and chief executive of Digital Signage Networks Pvt. Ltd, added that unless there was an industry-funded research, advertisers won’t take it at face value. “Currently there are no industry metrics for digital OOH."